​No More Lonely BIM

The use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) software helps the building construction industry, but its benefits are limited when used in isolation – a condition known as lonely BIM.

Reducing costs and increasing productivity are important goals in most industries, but particularly so in building construction, where productivity has flatlined for decades. The use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) processes helps, but its benefits are limited when used in isolation – a condition known as lonely BIM.

Simply put, lonely BIM is the use of 3D BIM models that form information silos; that is, they are not shared among multi-discipline project participants. In addition, linkages to other relevant information, such as schedules, budgets, and change orders, are nonexistent and therefore require manual processes to yield a holistic view of the project. Needless to say, such analyses are a snapshot in time, and do not represent a dynamic, real-time view of project details.

So, how do we transition from lonely BIM to collaborative, or social BIM? The process involves choosing a solution that connects models to relevant project data, and shares the result with all project stakeholders.

Intelligent Linking

As in life, socialising begins with making connections. In the case of BIM, these connections are digital, intelligently linking building model components with real-time schedule and cost data, resulting in 5D BIM (3D model + schedule + cost). This allows multi-discipline teams to more accurately plan, coordinate, and execute complex projects throughout their lifecycle. Instead of relying on separate, siloed systems for budgeting, scheduling, field issues, change orders, etc., social BIM ensures every piece of information is both connected and available.

Leveraging Cloud & Mobile Technologies

As project teams become more geographically dispersed, the quality of cross-discipline communications can make or break a building construction project. The latest technologies, such as cloud and mobile, have eased the transition to social, 5D BIM.

The cloud enables files to move from local servers to any location, while mobile technology gives access to authorized users from any web-enabled device. This combination supports cross-discipline collaboration that improves decision-making at every phase of the project.

As the need for multi-discipline collaboration grows, information silos – such as lonely BIM – are no longer viable. As BIM-based projects become the norm, so must their ability to inform dispersed project participants with real-time, actionable information.

The Case for HxGN SMART Build

Are you ready for social BIM? The right solution makes all the difference. HxGN SMART Build leverages the promise of social BIM by engaging every stakeholder, from the office to the field. Leveraging cloud and mobile technologies, as well as years of industry expertise, the solution provides real-time, role-based project data to those who need it, informing decisions that boost efficiency, productivity, and quality.

HxGN SMART Build. That’s shaping smart change.

Cathi Hayes
HxGN SMART Build Business Development Director

Cathi HayesCathi Hayes is the Global Business Development Director of HxGN SMART Build at Hexagon PPM. She focuses on helping building contractors achieve greater success in managing complex construction projects via the cloud through the adoption of leading-edge pre-construction planning and field execution productivity solutions. Cathi is a trusted BIM advisor and a leading voice on BIM throughout the global construction industry. She holds Architecture degrees from North Carolina State University and the University of Kansas. Cathi is an architect, building information modeling (BIM) pioneer and strategy leader with more than 20 years of experience developing and implementing workflow improvements in various facets of the building design and construction industry.

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